My name is Anne*, I am 14-years-old, I am a student at one of the local schools near my (rural) village.
I recently went to the health centre for post-abortion care. I was referred there by VODA and I was helped by the mid-wife, her name was Grace.
The VODA community volunteers, they found me at my grandmother’s house. They brought me to the health centre.
I was on my way to visit my grandmother. A man raped me. After he finished with me he told me to go back home and never to tell anyone about it. I went back home to my parents, in Luwero District. There is no VODA there. I realised I was pregnant because I found out I had missed my periods. Then I told my mother.
So then I had to go back to my grandmother’s house. She said we were going to the hospital but it wasn’t like the one where Grace works, where I finally got my post-abortion treatment. She took me to a place where a woman gave me some herbs. Then we went home and the thing came out. I was bleeding. Then the VODA counsellor came to my home and suggested to my grandmother that I should be taken for treatment.
I had learnt about how girls can get pregnant but I didn’t know anything about safe abortion. In Luwero, where I come from, many girls I hear they use herbs to abort but I had not tried it because I had not had any sex until that man forced me.
I am telling my friends about safe abortion and contraceptive services but I also need to be given more information about it because I was not taught about most of what Grace the midwife was telling me. I know that women can take precautions for family planning like pills but my mum told me it’s only for married people.
I am very thankful to VODA, I maybe could have died if the counsellors from VODA hadn’t asked to rush me to the health centre for post-abortion care.
* Not her real name